Russia announced it had downed a series of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) launched by Ukraine over the Crimean peninsula on the morning of May 25.
“Early this morning, our troops repelled another drone attack on Sevastopol,” Mikhail Razvozhaev, Governor of the Sevastopol port city government, announced on Telegram on May 25.
Razvozhaev claimed that at least two UAVs were shot down by the Russian Black Sea Fleet with small arms, while “several others” were disabled and shot down by electronic warfare systems.
“No facilities in the city were damaged,” Razvozhaev said, adding that security forces “continue to monitor the situation”.
The city of Sevastopol is located on the southwestern coast of Crimea. This strategic port city is home to the Russian Black Sea Fleet and has repeatedly been the target of drone and suicide boat attacks.
Crimean authorities on May 6 announced that air defense systems on the peninsula shot down two ballistic missiles launched by Ukraine with the Grom-2 tactical missile system. On the same day, Russian air defense and electronic warfare systems in Crimea also repelled an attack by a series of Ukrainian drones.
Crimea has repeatedly been the target of drone and missile attacks by Ukraine since Russia began its military campaign in the neighboring country. Attacks on the peninsula have increased in recent weeks.
Russia recently accused Ukraine of being behind drone attacks on Russian oil depots in Crimea. At the end of April, the explosion of the Russian oil depot in the city of Sevastopol destroyed more than 10 oil tanks of about 40,000 tons. This is the oil used for the Russian Black Sea Fleet stationed in Sevastopol.
Russia annexed Crimea in March 2014 after a controversial referendum. Ukraine claims the conflict will end only when Moscow withdraws all its troops, including in Crimea.
The Russian military is said to be urgently reinforcing the defense system in the Crimea peninsula to prevent raids by Ukrainian counter-attack forces.
Based on satellite images obtained at the end of April, the Russian military is said to have dug more trenches and erected more fortifications to prevent the Ukrainian advance in Crimea.
In addition, some heavy Russian military equipment appears to have been moved out of Crimea. According to observers, this is a move to preserve Moscow’s forces to avoid these weapons becoming the target of ambushes by the Ukrainian army.
Crimean leader Sergey Aksyonov announced on May 24 that the Kerch bridge connecting the Crimean peninsula to the Russian mainland has been temporarily closed for military exercises. Aksyonov spoke after videos appeared online showing smoke rising over the strategic bridge.